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What About You?

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Your firm has an About page on your website – every firm does – but have you ever really pondered what it says about you? An About page is akin to a professional bio, introducing readers to the firm as an entity rather than focusing on a single individual. Like bio pages, these are critically important tools for making connection with site visitors. This is where first-time readers will get a sense of the firm’s style, background and contributions to the profession.

Another similarity to bios is the high volume of traffic your About page will receive, and the relatively long time readers will spend there. These two facts make it especially important to share well-crafted copy that leaves visitors with a positive impression of your brand and inspires them to learn more about the benefits of working with the firm. You’ll succeed at both if you focus on three attributes when writing your About page:

Inviting. Your About page is about your firm, naturally, which makes it an appropriate place to use pronouns like “we,” “us,” and “our” more liberally than you would on other pages. You can even feel free to toot your own horn a bit. Just the same, if you want this page to feel inviting to those who land on it, you should keep your readers’ perspective in mind as you create copy. Which facts will be relevant to their situation? What about your history and mission makes the page meaningful to potential clients who come here to learn about the firm? How do your differentiators serve their needs? Writing about yourself is always fun, but filtering the information through the lens of your visitors’ experience will keep it relevant and, therefore, help it fulfill your goals for the page.

Informational. An About page shouldn’t be simply a glowing self-review. It should convey pertinent facts that help readers place your firm in the appropriate context. Include descriptions like the firm’s location, size and age along with a brief outline of your raison d’etre – why are you in business at all? The answer doesn’t have to be a formal mission statement or “vision” (and in most cases it shouldn’t). It can simply be a sentence or two about how the firm came to serve your niche, what sets you apart in the profession or the style or services that make you unique. Don’t forget to explain exactly who you serve, too, since that’s a key question driving web users to the page.

Interesting. Even an About page that’s complete and factual does no good at all if it’s 400 dry-as-dirt words. To deliver benefit, your About page has to be something people actually read, and short enough that they’re willing to do so. Starting with a long list of begats (X,Y&Z begat Z,M&N, who begat M, N&P…) will spike that bounce rate in an instant. While your firm’s lengthy evolution is meaningful to the original partners, it’s of no interest to the readers who visit your site today. Unless, perhaps, yours is the original progenitor of one of today’s most well-known firms. In most cases, however, it’s best to skip the begats and talk about today’s firm: who, how and why do you serve? Even more important, who are you? As with bios, what people really want here is some glimmer of style that they can relate to in a personal way. Friendly? Elite? Hyper-local? Hip? Give them a hint of the firm’s personality, lest they think you don’t have one.

When you can honestly say your firm’s About page is inviting, informational and interesting, you’ve got something to be proud of. You’ve built an asset that will reflect what’s best about your firm, effectively converting visitors into new clients.

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Sarah Warlick

Sarah Warlick founded Proof Positive Content to provide professional service firms with high-quality content that resonates with their individual audiences. Sarah's writing appears in books, on dozens of firm websites and in Accounting Today, Social Media Today, various professional journals and other leading publications, but usually under another name. Ghostwriters rarely get the glory - their clients do!

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